Sunday, 27 November 2011

Berlin: an authentic Berlin dancehall

The best way to get over jet lag is to get into the rhythm of the arrival city.  This rule we followed very literally by going to the historical Clarchen Ballhaus the very day we arrived in Berlin.  After settling into the rental apartment, we wandered around the neighbourhood and in no time found ourselves on Auguststrasse where the dancehall was located.  This dancehall had been around since 1913 and had kept its original decor and flavour.   We arrived on a Monday and it was salsa night.  We decided to have an early dinner in the outdoor patio and stay for the dancing to keep ourselves awake after the transatlantic flight.  

The dinner was delicious and excellent value.  Most memorable was the plate of white asparagus that was in season (it was May).  You can see below the outside of the building and the patio where dinner was served.  The mirror room on the second floor of the ballhaus was left in its original condition.  This used to be a separate ballroom for the upper class in the city and it was almost magical visiting it and imagining the glitz and glamour that used to hang around in that room.  For more on its history, go to

We stayed for the salsa - long enough to get us into the "rhythm" of the city.  Lots of fun and dance partners if you're willing!

The Clarchen Ballhaus and the outdoor patio
The mirror room upstairs

The mirror room set up for a private party

An afternoon dance class in the ballhaus

We shared a communal table on the patio with a couple of fellow travellers from Brussels, who very generously treated us to a round of beer!  What a great start to our Berlin experience!


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